Last Updated on July 11, 2023
Ryobi 40V HP Brushless Cordless Hedge Trimmer Has Incredible Capacity
Over the last year, Ryobi has been diving head-first into high-performance cordless OPE. Joining the Whisper Series is the Ryobi 40V HP Brushless 26-Inch cordless hedge trimmer. This trimmer has many familiar features but it’s the performance that’s raising eyebrows around here.
- 1.5-inch cut capacity
- Dual-action36-inch blades
- 180° rotating handle
- Hedge Sweep attachment
- May seem heavy if you’re used to smaller hedge trimmers
Ryobi 40V Cordless Hedge Trimmer Performance
One of the most noticeable features of this cordless hedge trimmer is the ridiculous 1 1/2-inch cut capacity Ryobi’s 40V brushless motor opens up. The only other battery-powered hedge trimmer we could find with the same cut capacity is the Stihl HSA 94 R on the Pro side of the market. Most tend to top out around 1-inch while there are a few 1 1/4-inch options available.
This is a big deal for a couple of reasons. One, it has the ability to handle larger branches while trimming. Two, this larger tooth spacing allows more material to smoothly pass through so the bar is less likely to bind up while making passes.
Regardless, it made trimming our hedges quick and easy.
There are two speeds to use with the 26-inch dual-action blades. If you’re not worried about conserving battery, the 3200 SPM top speed is the way to go. If you want to make that battery last longer, drop it down to the 2800 SPM low speed.
This hedge trimmer utilizes a two-blade system that greatly reduces felt vibrations. On some trimmers, one set of blades remains fixed while the other moves. Ryobi runs both blades back and forth like scissors. In this way, both edges of both blades constantly cut materials between the teeth.
Moving the blades in opposite directions absolutely squashes vibration. Because one moves forward while the other moves backward, the net movement evens out resulting in a much smoother cutting experience. Plus, with no vibrating gas engine to worry about, you end up with a very ergonomic tool.
This 40V hedge trimmer is a member of Ryobi’s Whisper Series which cuts down the noise level of outdoor power equipment. While the motor is noticeably quieter than others on the market, it’s difficult to reduce the actual blade noise on a tool like this. Measuring from our operator’s ear, our SPL meter clocked this cordless hedge trimmer at 82 dB on low and 87 dB on high. That said, it’s still dramatically quieter than any of the gas alternatives.
Ryobi carries over its Hedge Sweep that we’ve seen on previous models. It slides on a raised track on the top of the bar and helps to direct and clear clippings away from the top of hedges and shrubs. The best part is you don’t need to remove it when you want to replace the scabbard.
If for some reason you don’t like it, it’s removable.
Ryobi 40V Cordless Hedge Trimmer Design Notes
Size and Weight
The Ryobi 26-inch hedge trimmer measures 43 inches from end to end and weighs 11.3 pounds with its 2.0Ah battery. While it’s not the lightest trimmer on the market, it does have a really nice balance with that battery pack.
We’re seeing more brands adding a pivoting handle feature to their hedge trimmers and makes good sense to us. It’s a simple feature that allows you to comfortably work at a variety of angles and makes it very easy to shape up your hedges and landscaping.
To adjust the angle, pull back on the release button, and rotate the handle. There’s 180° of total rotation with detents at 45° and 90° in both directions.
Good handle spacing and weight distribution are key for using longer tools safely and effectively. It’s pretty clear that Ryobi had their 2.0Ah battery in mind when working on their design but we also found it feels pretty good with a 4.0Ah pack as well.
Both horizontal and vertical cutting is very easy and the wide front handle gives you plenty of grip options. Combine that wide front handle with the versatility of the multi-position handle and you’ve got a real winning team.
Ryobi 40V Cordless Hedge Trimmer Price
The Ryobi 40V 26-inch hedge trimmer retails for $329 and comes with a 2.0Ah battery, a charger, and a removable hedge sweep. Along with the accessories, Ryobi includes a 5-year tool warranty and a 3-year battery warranty.
The Bottom Line
The Ryobi 40V 26-Inch cordless hedge trimmer has plenty of power, cut capacity, and blade length to get the job done quickly and efficiently. With its larger capacity and excellent top speed, it cuts more like a professional-grade trimmer without the Stihl price tag.
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Ryobi 40V Cordless Hedge Trimmer Specifications
- Model: Ryobi RY40660
- Power Source: Ryobi 40V battery
- Cut Capacity: 1.5 in.
- Weight: 9.44 lbs (bare), 11.25 lbs (with 40V 2.0Ah battery)
- Tool Length: 43 in.
- 2-Speed Motor
- Bar Length: 26 in.
- No-Load Speed: 2,800 SPM (low), 3,200 SPM (high)
- Warranty: 5-year tool, 3-year battery
- Price: $329 (kit)